With all the controversy surrounding the recent remarks about Róisín Murphy supposedly calling Lady Gaga a "cheap imitation" of herself, EQ banded together with the always fabulous Arjan Writes to get the REAL story from Róisín Murphy herself!
A special mini press conference was called together with Arjan, Róisín and myself where us music bloggers got 10 minutes each with the fashion & music icon to discuss what's going on with Róisín and to set the record straight about these fabricated Lady Gaga remarks.
To read Arjan's portion of the press conference, make sure you check it out exclusively on Arjan Writes.
EQ's portion of the press conference is below where Róisín talks about the media machine, the gay male diva thing, music journalists fear of fashion, London Fashion Week and her involvement in Action Aid – enjoy!
EQ: Thanks Róisín for giving Arjan and I an insight as to why you wanted to correct people's reaction to the Lady Gaga statement. Now, it's been going on for ages, but why is it do you think the media try to pit female artists against one another or create competitive scenarios in their spin? I myself am both a Róisín Murphy fan and a Lady Gaga fan but the media seems to think that just because two artists are similar – they must be at competitive odds or can't co-exist in the same world together…
Róisín Murphy: Yeah – I think a lot that the "machine" of the media is built around conflict. Obviously they are always looking for a "meaty" narrative that will draw people in. A journalist is always looking for a way to make the eye go to what they wrote. So when you're doing interviews, I find that almost impossible to bear that in mind because I'm too honest a person and I rush to get it done and to be as real as possible. There can be an art to dealing with the media. Some people are absolutely brilliant at it or have been completely trained in it and know how to avoid these pitfalls. But I'm not like that because I'm usually thinking about something else…like you know, what am I gonna be doing in the studio in a half an hours time or something like that. I haven't been trained in the "dark art" of being able to avoid that. You can understand why journalists want to create a narrative that people want to read about. People love a good argument! I do too! [Laughs]. I read rubbish gossip papers and things like that sometimes – particularly when I'm on a plane I might buy a big stack of crap and read it and then fall asleep. It's like gossip isn't it?People just like it. This (Lady Gaga) situation was one too many. I didn't recognize myself, at all!
I think what makes this whole Roisin vs. Gaga fabricated controversy quite funny, especially from a gay music bloggers perspective is that some gay men are quite loyal to their divas. You have your die hard Madonna fans, you have your very loyal Róisín Murphy fans and you have your massive Kylie fans who NEVER seem to get along. A lot of gay teens and younger gay men are latching onto Lady Gaga now. What are your thoughts on why gay men seem to pick just ONE music diva to stick with and vow their loyalty to?
Really is that true?! It's very easy to make a statement on the internet as well but you don't absolutely have to live by it – you know what I mean? Do you buy that? That's what I'm saying! A few maybe might be like that. Blogging and being able to interact on a public platform, that adds even more weight to the stuff you say – even though you may have moved on but you had a moment where you said "I HATE so and so" and "I LOVE so and so". The day after you might feel completely different, but it's still there in print. I don't know if I completely buy it because I know a lot of my fans like all sorts of music. Then there are those people who like an argument. People are just very opinionated generally. I can be very opinionated myself [laughs].
I was watching a recent interview you did where you said it was dangerous for you to marry the two aspects of music and fashion together because they can exist independently. You further said that music journalists in particular are scared about fashion and I would have to agree with you there. In your mission to marry the two together, do you ever feel it's all just an up hill battle?
Well I don't know if it's my mission anyways. I don't know what my mission is. It's a day-to-day thing. It's like "what am I doing today", "what am I doing now?". It's really how I've done everything in my career. Even from the beginning it was like, "do you like my tight sweater?" and that's it. That was the beginning of my life in music – it was a total accident. It's always been "what's there in front of me now". So I don't know what my mission is, but I guess what I'm saying is that it is quite funny. I am very serious about my music. I invest so much energy, time, love and attention into the music that it is dangerous to play with imagery on top of that because that can overshadow it. There are people that are scared of it. The typical type of music people tend to be very far away from fashion – the typical serious music journalist hates shopping! [laughs] You know what I mean? They don't understand why their girlfriend has to buy 50 pairs of shoes and stuff. That's just the lay of the land in music world. I kinda like the danger of it. It's something that gives traction in the performance as well. Once I'm on stage and I'm just posing all these things together, they all pull friction off one another and creates that traction in the performance that I don't think I'd get otherwise. In my mind, that's what it's about…
London fashion week is coming up – What is it like in the world of Róisín Murphy during this important week for the industry? Is it hectic during this week being the fashion icon that you are?
Oh my lord! [laughs]. Right now I don't feel like a fashion icon. I feel very creative musically at the moment. I'm not being that visual at the moment in my music mode. It's very healthy for me though. If I come out at the end of the day in the studio and I've achieved something then that's good. I know London Fashion Week is around the corner and I don't QUITE know how I'm going to approach it this season. I am pregnant. And that puts a different spin on my fashion choices. So we'll just have to see how that one works out! I feel like I enjoy making images and the way I dress is a part of that. I just enjoy making narratives and stories out of both the music and the imagery and that's what I feel I do. I'm sure I will look totally different this time probably…different to how I looked on "Overpowered". What that means I don't know yet. I don't even know how my ass is gonna turn out!
I think it's very interesting too that in light of this fabricated controversy, it kinda goes somewhat against the message you were sending out in your recent involvement in the Action Aid campaign – where you are bringing women musicians together to fight the imbalance of women's rights…
Ironic isn't it! You've just pointed out an incredible irony yes! The Action Aid thing is cool, it's like a little bit of my time for a very good cause and I got to sing a great song alongside some other great female singers and I'm proud to be involved in it!
And there you have it EQs. The word from Róisín Murphy about Lady Gaga. It won't surprise me to see the both of them arm-in-arm at a fashion/music event very soon and I think that's a great thing. I love Róisín. I love Gaga and I'm happy that the two can co-exist together for their fans and their passion for both music and fashion.
It was really fun collaborating with Arjan Writes on this interview (make sure you read his interview)- he's my favourite music blogger as you know and getting to three-way with him and Róisín was mind-blowing…now, don't go twisting my words, you all know what I mean…
Also thanks to Brad for always being the man to make it happen.